10 Things to do in Nashville, TN - Nashville Eats
As many of you know, I had the pleasure of visiting Nashville, TN for the first time this past February for the second leg of Rue-La-Palooza (my ultimate birthday celebration) and I have to say Nashville was the perfect bookend to my incredible birthday shenanigans. If you haven't already, check out part 1 of this 3-part series on Nashville Experiences. In this installment I'll be covering the tasty food that this soul-filled city has to offer.
My post on this full of life city got a little lengthy so I decided to break it up into three parts:
Nashville Experiences, Nashville Eats, and Nashville Drinks. So, let's pick up where we left off at number 5 on my tried and tested list of 10 Things to do in Nashville... Let's dig into Nashville Eats!
Now, when you hear Nashville, TN and food, your mind probably instantly thinks southern-styled foods that are mostly associated with the culture of the deep south. However, Nashville has a very eclectic restaurant scene heavily influenced by southern cooking, aka, well-seasoned! Don't worry, I will get to the fried chicken and bar-b-que in this post, however, I will also bust the myth that it's all about classic southern cuisine in Nashville. The city is full of eateries of all types, and you'll have plenty to choose from. So, without further ado...
5. Hit Justin Timberlake’s The Twelve Thirty Club
Now listen, if you want to experience one of the swankiest, posh, and talent filled spots in Nashville, look no further than The Twelve Thirty Club owned by none other than Justin Timberlake. This restaurant just oozes all things opulent with its fancy cocktails, decadent food, and ambiance and music that are to live for!
The club is divided into 3 sections: the Supper Club and the Rooftop, which are both upstairs and the Honky Tonk which is located on the ground level.
The style and sophistication of this place is unmeasured. Boasting the simple yet fitting tagline of "Eat. Drink. Music." this fine establishment delivers a solid 10 on all three. #missionacccomplished
The food was DELICIOUS! We started with sushi moved on to entrées with sharable, nice portioned, sides and ended with fabulous desserts. The food here met the Nashville standard of being #goodmoodfood and gave everything that was expected and a lil extra! Needless to say, we ate and left no crumbs! (well, maybe there was a crumb or two, but you know what I mean.)
This place was packed so thank goodness my friends were smart enough to book our reservation in advance. I suggest you do the same especially if you plan to dine in the supper club. And trust me, YOU WILL WANT TO DINE IN THE SUPPER CLUB! The elite fine dining menu has so much to offer so you will definitely want this place on your list of places to smash in #nashville.
If you’re just dropping in for music and a few cocktails then you probably don’t need to make a resy, but do expect a nice size crowd and a bit of a wait for a beverage and a seat if you go during prime time. Insiders secret (yes, I have named myself an unofficial insider of The Twelve Thirty Club after only being there once, but hey, that’s what I do) there is lounge-like seating near the band in the supper club which is on a first come first serve basis. So even if you don’t have reservations, you may get lucky enough to get one of those seats (which offer a great view of the band). From what I’ve heard, you can only order apps and cocktails here (full menu is not available) but it is great to have as an option.
Like everywhere else in Nashville, you never know which celebrity will stroll in and maybe even grace the stage and perform. About an hour after we left, the one and only Jimmy Falon sauntered right into 12/30 and graced both stages with a little musical performance. Unfortunately, we missed him but we still had an incredible time. Besides, we were moving along to our next adventure. Onward!
6. Eat THE Best Fried Chicken EVER!
I know, it’s hard to read that you will eat the best fried chicken ever in Nashville but I have to say, this chicken SLAPS!
When I was told that there was a place in Nashville that "has the best fried chicken" I responded with two words #challengeaccepted
Boom, we pulled up at Waldo’s Chicken and Beer...
I have no qualms about saying that outside of my mom’s fried chicken, which is down-right sensational, this place truly did have the absolute perfect piece of fried chicken. I mean, you can actually see the flavor in the pic below!
The seasoning, the subtle crisp, the thoroughness in which the bird was cooked makes this chicken perfect!
They have signatures sauces and when I tell you the collard greens were out of this world, I mean it. This cute little chicken restaurant in the Germantown neighborhood of Nashville lived up to its reputation and is not only Rue Approved, it is now on Rue’s re-bucket list (a list of things that I must re-do before I kick the bucket, lol). Also, I found out that they have other locations throughout a few states in the lower south. Who knows, maybe they will expand their brand to a city near you!
One interesting thing about Waldo's was the wall art throughout the place. It is filled with some of your favorite celebs hanging out with chickens. I never quite got to the bottom of this, but I must say the paintings made me "cluckle".
7. Feast at other delicious eateries and restaurants
Waldo’s is not where the good food stops. I had the pleasure of eating at a few other spots, all of which left an incredible impression on my thoughts on the world of food in Nashville.
Two words… burnt ends! When you find yourself taking “burnt ends shots” on Broadway street prior to entering Tootsie's just because they are absolutely incredible, then you know that you’ve got your hands on some good stuff! I have to say, the food and service was ON POINT at Edley’s and getting there is a Nashville must.
Every place I share on all of my posts have great service, otherwise I wouldn't write about them. So whenever I add comments about the service being great somewhere, just know that place went above and beyond expectations.
Edley’s exceeded expectations and after visiting their website I see why. One of their core values is to be Thoughtful – “We treat our guest and team members like family and help them create memorable moments.” I can attest to this! #missionaccomplished Edleys!
They have several locations, one of which is walking distance from Attaboy, which I'll share with you next week, (perfect for killing two birds in one stone) so be sure to plan accordingly.
In addition to Edley's, below is my quick list and a few “must” for each restaurant I suggest while in Nashville"
Meats are smoked “low and slow” giving them amazing flavor and a tender texture
Huge local beer selection
Delicious sides made from scratch
Enticing desserts (tried chess pie for the first, but definitely not the last, time)
Excellent food seasoned to perfection (no saltshaker needed)
A swanky spot with an incredible ambiance (think Vegas, meets Nashville, meets Gatsby)
Several levels of fun: Honky Tonk, Supper Club and Rooftop Bar
Fancy signature cocktails and extensive wine and champagne list
Cute little hotel restaurant
Southern food meets French fare
Beautiful huge bar
They have a cocktail cart that serves table side Manhattans
Located in the super-cute Midtown area of Nashville at the Kimpton Hotel
Taco Mama (a taco bar) I know we have these in Charlotte, but this was my first time so here's an honorable mention
Killer margarita menu
Great place to stop for a quick lunch
Eclectic California inspired cuisine with a Nashville twist!
Boasts the BBIGH “Best burger in Green Hills”
Vegetarian and vegan options
Located in the heart of the Green Hills area (conveniently across the street from the mall).
So, there you have it. Numbers 5, 6, and 7 on my list of 10 things to do in Nashville. I hope this post didn't make you too hungry! If you have been to any of these places let me know in the comments and if not, let me know which one you would try first once you touch down in Nashville.
Next week is all about Nashville Drinks and I'm going to tell you about all of the Tennessee whiskey I had the pleasure of tasting, among other things. Until then!